The most trusted and popular consumer complaints website
Explore your opportunities! Create an account or Sign In

The Great American Photo Contest / Bait and switch

1 WA, United States Review updated:

This website ( is a scam. I, being a new parent, thought it would be fun to enter my daughter's picture into a contest to see how she did. Innocent enough... or at least I thought.

After registering on their site and uploading the photo I chose, I was slammed with page after page of things to sign up for, purchase, or be contacted about. After clicking "no thanks" and "skip" a bunch of times I finally gave up and closed my browser.

Next thing I know I'm getting multiple emails every day from them saying to "hurry up and vote", but every time I go to their site I can't even find the picture of my daughter, even when I log in. Not to mention that, when my wife signed up to vote, she just got the same bogus ads. She said she never even saw our daughter's picture nor the number of "votes" she may have gotten.

I have deleted my account from this website and I STRONGLY suggest you do the same if you've signed up. I think it's absolutely disgusting that these people prey on parents who think their kids are cute.


Sort by: UpDate | Rating


  • Ro
      23rd of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    You can't even vote, and no email confirmation is ever sent. You just keep getting redirected to a bunch of offers and products they want you to buy. What a SCAM.

  • Rd
      18th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    I also signed up and paid the 20.00 to this comapny, is there any legal action that can done to shut them down?

  • Ri
      21st of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    I heard from a friend there is a class action starting against the company responsible for all this spam. Let's chase the vermin down and run them outta town! What a sick, stupid scam. Sorry to all those who fell for it and still receiving these crappy emails!

  • Ju
      24th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes


  • Na
      25th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    How do you delete your account? I haven't figure out a way yet.

  • Xa
      11th of Apr, 2009
    0 Votes

    I also feel very dumb for doing this without looking it through. The whole thing is based on trying to get your email, and for you to email everyone you can possibly email to get votes, so they have their emails too. All so they can try to get as many people as possible to sign up for offers and BS, and spam their emails and yours. So everybody you send a vote email too will probably hate you for getting them on their spam list. Luckily I never gave them anyone else's email to vote, because of all the offers and crap they tryed to put me through when I signed up. As for deleting it, you're right, I haven't found any way to delete it. Maybe you have to contact them. Just the fact that my kids photo is on these lowlifes site sickens me.

  • Me
      15th of Apr, 2009
    0 Votes

    They should be forced to watch Barbara Streisand's Yentl every day for life.

  • Bo
      6th of May, 2009
    -1 Votes

    look you guys, after years of looking at scam web sites, just LOOKING at this gave me the impression that it probably wasn't legit, ALWAYS research any site that you might do business with, you will almost always find complaints out there, additionally check with the BBB, NEVER give any web site that isn't known and reputable your cc or debit card number, NEVER!!! If you REALLY want to register for a site like this, use some sort of email aliasing service like Yahoo premium mail where you can create email aliases and then delete them if the site turns out to be spammy. I NEVER EVER give ANYONE my root email address (the real address behind my dozens of aliases) not even my friends and family have the root and because of this system i get ZERO spam, if i do, i track down the alias it was sent to and DELETE IT!.
    Get Mcafee Site Adviser (its free) and READ the site reports because it will often warn you about spammy, or scam web sites such as this.
    Another great tip, look at EVERYTHING on the internet suspiciously first, treat everything as though it *could be a scam and after a while of doing this, you will begin to spot the scams. and im sorry, that site doesn't prey on parents that think their kids are cute, it preys are dumb people!!

  • Da
      7th of May, 2009
    0 Votes

    I have received numerous emails saying that I need to hurry up and vote and then that my baby has won. I became paranoid after receiving different emails asking to give my credit card info to enter my child into another contest. I did not give credit info. They even said that i can send by mail only a consent form to a address listed on site, after down loading the form and now that I am writing this, I do not know if there is even a address to send to. They must have wanted me to down load a virus. Please stop these people. My credit card company is sending emails as well. I also entered my child into cute Kid contest and I never received anything from that site as well and I did enter my credit card info. I will write back to let you know what to do. Is anyone starting a class action suit against these scammers???????

  • Li
      13th of Jun, 2009
    0 Votes

    How do you delete you account from the web-site?

  • Li
      13th of Jun, 2009
    0 Votes

    How do I remove my name from their web site?

  • Ma
      1st of Jul, 2009
    +2 Votes a user of the site, I understand where ya'll are coming from, but you're all missing a key point here. One of my good friends was April's winner, and I know how many votes she had, and I was pretty close. I was pretty pissed the first time I voted, so I tried something out. I selected vote, and then closed the page immediately without giving any info to these ads. The vote counted, and I told all my friends, and my friend who won told all her friends, and BAM we got hundreds of votes and never signed one thing. The best part is, the only reason they can afford the prize is bc of those ads and garbage, and my friend basically reaped the benefits of other people's stupidity. They gave their info, made money through the ads for the biz, and my friend got the reward. Also, if you don't want their emails, just block the sender of em; it's pretty easy. I also got one of their books, and it was high quality...nice cover, high-quality pictures. The book isn't a scam. And, in my eyes, if you play your cards right you can have a great time with this contest without having to be annoyed at all.

  • Au
      9th of Jul, 2009
    -1 Votes

    Hi there! While I would LOVE to be able to jump on the naysayer bandwagon... I feel compelled to clear the air for all those parents out there who want to show off their beautiful babies. In November(I think) of 2007, I submitted a photo of my daughter, along with $20 to the "Fame & Fortune Contest" - please note, the Fame & Fortune Contest IS a part of the Great American Photo Contest... however, it's the alternate contest where you actually pay an entry fee...and I believe it's a bi-annual contest. They also have the free entry contest that occurs monthly, and yes, you DO have to deal with the spam of ads and offers... how do you think they keep the contest free? But I digress... the point here is to tell you... IT'S LEGIT! How cool it was to find out last Thanksgiving (November 2008) that we had won the Grand Prize!!! As it states on the rules you get a U.S. Treasury Bond... which means, yes, it's valued @ $25, 000... but you gotta wait until it matures... but hey, it's a VALID, US TREASURY BOND... and wow! You WON! Additionally, we were so excited to have had the opportunity to meet Mr. Gillon (CEO) and his family when they came down to personally deliver the prize. They also brought my daughter a trophy so that she had a tangible memory! Not only that, but we got our 15 minutes of fame...we were published in the local paper, The Orlando Sentinel...and then... just this past month... we were proud to see our picture in none other than People Magazine!

    Moral to this story: think of ALL the people who enter these contests and the hundred or so who may have had an issue with them... think of other large companies that suffer similar statistics. I'm not negating other people's complaints... what I AM saying is that the contest IS a valid contest. People DO win... and if my daughter hadn't exceeded the age group limit... I'd be entering her again! I think she's JUST...THAT...CUTE. So for all you parents who want to show off your kids, this is a contest worthy enough to give it a shot!

  • Cu
      10th of Jul, 2009
    0 Votes

    This contest is a lie... I entered my girls picture the first month (April) and had a little less than 100 votes, so I did not win. They supposedly re-enter you again if you dont win. O.K so I got all my friends to vote everyday for the month of May, got almost 200 votes and BAMMM, I tried to go in my account just hours before the end of the month and could not enter. There was a message saying that my account had expired. I mean, if they re-enter you again, where does it say that your account expires before the months end? This is a SCAM and everyone should know it. I sent them a message stating the expired account and that I would contact the Better Business Bureau and have had no answer since the end of May. I had asked them a question that how could we know how many votes the winners had, they answered that everyone should not worry about others votes but your own, WTF. How would this be a LEGIT contest if no one gets to know how many votes the winners had, right? We all know we have cute kids, but stop wasting your time like I did for two straight months.

  • Au
      31st of Jul, 2009
    +2 Votes

    I just want to weigh in again here... I entered my daughter in the contest in late 2007 and did not find out I had won until Thanksgiving of 2008. Mind you, I participated in the paid portion of the contest... there were a ton of entries even in that division. My daughter received the prize, they came out to the house and delivered it IN PERSON. The CEO of the company introduced us to his family... yes, these are people like you and I... it's not an automated thing. But it does take time.

    If you feel you wasted 2 months voting for your child..then yes, you WASTED it. It's all in how you look at it! I also entered my daughter in the FREE, get that... FREE... contest... and I was PROUD to share with my friends and family what a beautiful little girl she was and since I'm not a spammer, I told them to vote for her... ONE TIME. I didn't browbeat them, because hey, what's the fun in that? Instead, I had a great time... and yeah, so I got a handful of emails telling me to enter my kid in the Great American Photo Contest... and I was like, I already did... but obviously, once you sign up you make your email available for future advertisements. I read the small print... I clicked accept and submit. Life goes on. It wasn't a scam though. Just because you don't win doesn't make it a scam... but posting about it in a fit of angst due to the fact that you did NOT win... just makes us poor sports. And one more thing... MANY contests out there do not post winning results... in fact, in order to get a list of winners, most of the time, you are required to send a SASE to an address. Try and remember it's also supposed to be fun and a way to show off your beautiful children as opposed to looking at it like a competition or a children's beauty pageant. I have this mental image of 16 mothers slinging photos of our kids around the room, screaming that their child is the cutest, while a bunch of toddlers play on the floor together!

  • Ro
      24th of Sep, 2009
    +1 Votes

    I agree completely that this is a scam. It is not so-called FREE if you have to pay 20 bucks to enter. How is that free? I did some research about it being a scam and found where a woman managed to get ahold of their HQ address and found it to be an abondoned building. Does that sound legit to you? So for what Miss Audra Smith said about it all being true, sounds like you work for The Great American Scam Contest. PLEASE..DO NOT WASTE YOUR TIME OR MONEY!

  • Ch
      8th of Dec, 2009
    0 Votes

    SCAM SCAM SCAM SCAM!!! I hate to admit it, but I am also one of the many (naive) victims of this scam, too. I actually ordered a photo plaque in 11/08 by debit card, received a confirmation email with an invoice number but the item was never received. Still haven't had received it even after making several attempts to contact them via email, phone & mail. I did get several reply emails stating the order would soon be shipped (canned response). I also asked to be provided with the shipment tracking number & then did not hear back at all. So I filed a complaint with the BBB. Anyway, it has now been over a year ago since the original transaction. I would love to be a part of any class-action lawsuit against this company & this Mr. Gillon (or is that his real name?). Recently sent another email to their customer service dept. We'll see if they reply at all.

  • Au
      9th of Dec, 2009
    0 Votes

    Rosiemama, I get it... you're bitter. Don't accuse people of things though. If you actually READ the post I wrote, you'd have seen it said I paid $20 to enter the FAME AND FORTUNE contest... which is not the same as the FREE contest. But if you're so determined to believe that I work for them, try watching the video. Mr. Gillon and his family were awesome. His daughters were playing with my daughter, his parents were there talking to my parents. It was a wonderful surprise just before Christmas. Just be sure you know what you are accusing people of before you start slandering them. I don't work for this company. I work odd hours with a horrible boss for crappy pay just like half the people out there... but then I also accept the fact that NOT EVERYONE WINS. And while yes, my daughter won this contest, she hasn't won EVERY contest we've entered. I'm just able to accept that there are other cute kids out there.

  • Kj
      10th of Dec, 2009
    +3 Votes

    This contest is not a scam. How do I know? My son Carson won for the month of August of 2009. We have already received the check so I know it is real. Yes there are a lot of sponsors and adds but how else do you expect the contest to be free? As for the Fame and Fortune contest I think $20 is pretty reasonable considering the amount you have a chance to win. I have spoke to Mr. Gillon both on the phone and through email and everytime he has been kind and helpful. This contest has been one of the greatest experiences for us, just being able to see the wonderful collection of baby photos they have!

  • St
      17th of Dec, 2009
    +2 Votes

    It is a total scam!!! These people should be locked up!!!

Post your comment